Celebrity MasterChef – Heat 2 – Did Michelle Bridges Deserve To Win
Ok you would think as reality TV blogger I would be barracking for the reality tv ‘star’ Michelle Bridges, one of the trainers on The Biggest Loser, however I wasn’t. I was going for Peter Fitzsimonswho I have been a long time fan of particularly his writing. So I was hoping him to kick some MasterChef arse.
It was like a giant between two petite girls. Peter towered over his two competitors of Michelle, and former Hi 5 performer Kathleen De Leon.
First up they got to choose their own dish to cook with 1 and half hours to do it in.
Kathleen decided to go with something from her Phillipino background and cook Chicken Adobo and a Caramel Flan. I have to be honest I don’t know much about the cuisine of the Phillipines nor even in my Asian neighbourhood seen a restaurant/cafe selling this type of food. I figured if it was any good there would be a plethora of restaurants like thai and Japanese. However French is fantastic and there is not a great deal of that around in Sydney.
The chicken which looked pretty simple had garlic, soy, and a few other ingredients got some good feed back from the judges, but her caramel flan was what found their way to the judges heart. It did look beautifully presented and delicious.
Michelle was cooking fat and salt free Moroccan lamb cutlets with eggplant and blackcurrent couscous. Personally I thought this dish was a bit of a cop out considering she had a pre-bought spice mix even though she did add in some extra fresh herbs. Also I thought putting the spice mix on the lamb and in the couscous was not great. And Matt Preston did call her on it when he judged the dish. I thought judge Gary Mehigan whinging about the lack of salt was a bit over the top, with all that spice on it would salt have added that much to the dish.
Peter Fitzsimons made a traditional Coq Au Vin with mashed potatoes. He put egg yolks into the mash, and this was panned by the judges. Saying his mash was grainy, and he should have used butter and cream. Peter Fitzsimons said he wife told him that tip, and to be fair it may taste ok if you add it in just before you serve and it is hot. Note to all future MasterChef contestants, when you are practising make sure you taste your dish when it is cold, as that is how the judges taste it.
Also it was great that Channel Nine let Peter Fitzsimons lovely wife Lisa Wilkinson from the Today show to be filmed something TV stations should be more gracious about. But maybe Channel Nine are hoping for some MasterChef magic will rub off on them. Chances of Lisa talking about the show tomorrow on her program. High.
The winner of this challenge was Kathleen De Leon with her flan ensuring she edged out the others.
The Pressure Test – Special guest Chef Brent Savage from Bentley Restaurant, Sydney.
Kathleen now had the advantage of picking which of Brent’s ridiculously hard dishes they would have to pick. The choice was Roast spatchcock with sweet corn polenta, pistachio and asparagus, or Pistachio cake with yoghurt cream and mandarin ice cream.
Kathleen chose the spatchcock apparently the hardest dish ever on the show. Two and half hours to cook the dish, which had about five squillion components.
However did anyone think it was strange that there was footage of Brent showing them how prep the spatchcock? Which made a lie out of them just being thrown the recipe and getting a taste of the dish.
Michelle was not used to working with oil as she overheated with the spatchcock balls, and then it was not heated enough for her confit dusted with polenta.
Peter’s pistachio did not look like puree, but more like ground pistachio dust. And the presentation was a bit strange. in fact in judging Matt Preston called it pistachio dirt. By the way I noted Matt’s ads for Handee paper towels. I would have thought he would have done something slightly more sophisticated, but who cares he may as well milk his reality TV fame for as long as possible. As us viewers are a fickle bunch in a year or two we will be hitching our sail’s to someone else.
Gary thought Peter’s chicken ball tasted good, nice and moist. But apparently he had also left the jus off it. I knew at this point he could not win.
Kathleen’s dish was plated very well, but her spatchcock ball was too dry and overcooked. I must say I thought she looked the most comfortable in the kitchen.
Gary said “Jus very good. The chicken was borderline”.
The judges thought Michelle Bridges was the best plated dish however her ball was a bit undercooked. But in the end that is how Gary and George like it so Michelle ended up winning and will be seen in the semi finals. I have to be honest I thought Kathleen should have won.
Also if you want to taste Brent Savages dish apparently for this month during the Taste of Sydney Festival you can have it for lunch for $35 with a glass of wine. Go to their website for contact details. http://www.thebentley.com.au/